Week Three of My #SummerofVintageKidLit – Canadian Summer!

by | Jul 5, 2019 | Books, Reading | 5 comments

I’m eager to begin week two of my #SummerofVintageKidLit! If you haven’t yet heard about my summer reading challenge, you can take a look at my recent blog post that has all the details.

Last week we read Betsy and Tacy Go Over the Big Hill, and you can read my quick recap in the comments of this post 🙂

The book we’re reading this week is Canadian Summer by Hilda van Stockum. It’s the second book in the heartwarming Mitchells series, and it’s full of beautiful descriptions of the Canadian countryside in post-World War II. The Mitchells are one of my very favorite book families, and if you haven’t met them yet, now is the perfect time!

Here’s a summary about this book from Goodreads:

The large and growing Mitchell family, transferring their location to Montreal, can’t find a house to buy or rent. They settle, over Mother’s protests, for a remote, rickety summer house in the woods near a lake. The dangers, antics, quarrels, and fun which now unroll bring each member of the family into vivid characterization. 

Happy Reading! Feel free to discuss this book by leaving a comment below, or tweet about it using the hashtag #SummerofVintageKidLit! Or join my Facebook group to be alerted of all the latest posts.


  1. Julie Aamoth

    Have had trouble finding this. County library system doesn’t have it, don’t see it on Open Library, ebooks only has in audio version. Fortunately it seems like one can get a used copy inexpensively via Amazon, but that will take awhile. Look forward to reading it eventually, however.

    • Anna Rose Johnson

      I hope you’ll be able to obtain a copy, Julie! It’s such a fun one, reminiscent of the Melendys 🙂

  2. Anna Rose Johnson

    UPDATE 7/10

    Loved revisiting this one, it’s an absolute gem…I first read it two years ago, and what stood out most in my mind from that read was a stunning description of a scenic vista on the Mitchells’ picnic. It is still one of my favorite scenes in the book! The writing reminds me of Elizabeth Enright mixed with L.M. Montgomery and Noel Streatfeild… A+!

    I also appreciate the shifting POVs…I always like it in middle grade books when there are scenes from the parents’ perspective. It just adds an extra layer of characterization and dimension.

  3. Sheila

    My library has eight books by Hilda van Stockum and they are all Reference Only. I guess I will be spending a lot of time at the library sometime! The copy of Canadian Summer I am reading now was accessed via Inter-Library Loan from the University of Victoria, BC. I am mostly intrigued that an author I have never heard of has her books in special collections. Also surprised having taken a university-level children’s literature course to have never come across her before.

    • Anna Rose Johnson

      I am surprised that her books are not more popular, as I find her writing to be absolutely beautiful, and her characters are so compelling. I vividly recall reading “Friendly Gables” (the sequel to Canadian Summer) the Christmas I was eight years old, and I was just so delighted with the story. I reread it every few years.

      I hope you will enjoy discovering her books! I’ve only read the Mitchells trilogy, but I’d love to read more.


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